News / Asia

Protesters Rally in China, Philippines Against S. China Sea Claim

Protesters march towards the Chinese consulate during a rally in Manila's financial district of Makati, Philippines, May 11, 2012.
Protesters march towards the Chinese consulate during a rally in Manila's financial district of Makati, Philippines, May 11, 2012.
Activists opposed to China’s territorial claims in the South China Sea marched on the Chinese embassy in Manila Friday, further escalating the two countries’ territorial dispute.

Huangyan Island is a small, rocky outcrop of land about 220 kilometers from the Philippine mainland of Luzon. Tensions in the region escalated on April 10 when the Philippines accused Chinese vessels of illegally fishing in Philippine territory.

China has long claimed sovereignty over the islands, called the Scarborough Shoal in the Philippines.

On Friday, foreign ministry spokesperson Hong Lei blamed the Philippines for rising tensions between the two countries. He said the Philippines side encouraged people to hold anti-China embassy protests, an action that complicates and magnifies the situation.  

Hong said China pays great attention to the safety of Chinese nationals in the Philippines and has demanded the Philippines take effective measures to earnestly protect the safety of Chinese nationals and institutions in the Philippines.  

The dispute has become an issue of national pride for some Chinese. Small groups of protesters marched in front of the Philippine embassy in Beijing, Friday.

"I believe this Huayuan Island is an inseparable part of China.  I hope their governments don’t make this a cause for bad relations," one protester said.

The protest in Manila was much larger than the one in Beijing. Hundreds of protesters marched in front of the Chinese embassy - many carrying placards that read:  “China Back Off.” 

“The main objective of the protest action is to call the attention of the international community with regards to the Chinese government’s continuing and escalating intrusions in the Panatag [Scarborough] shoal area which we strongly believe is an integral part of the Philippine territory,” explained Emma Hizon, one of the organizers.

The standoff escalated in April when China sent two maritime surveillance ships to prevent the Philippines from arresting Chinese fishermen off Huangyan Island. A Philippines coast guard vessel is currently facing off with the two Chinese ships.  

Several countries claim parts of the South China Sea, including Vietnam, Brunei, Malaysia and Taiwan. The waterway is a strategically important trade route and a potentially rich source of oil and natural gas in the region. But Chinese officials have ramped up warnings in recent weeks about the territorial dispute, with state-backed newspapers warning of “small-scale war” if the Philippines does not back off.

China warned its citizens in the Philippines to be cautious and the China International Travel Service, a large government-run travel agency, said it was postponing trips to the Philippines because of the protests. The standoff is also affecting trade between the two countries. In what may be a punitive action by the Chinese government, 1,200 containers of bananas from the Philippines are being held in customs because of what authorities say are "quarantine concerns".

Meanwhile civic groups in the Philippines say they are planning more protests outside of Chinese missions in New York, Singapore and Rome.  


 

You May Like

Photogallery Americans Celebrate Thanksgiving With Feasts, Festivities

Holiday traditions include turkey dinners, 'turkey trots,' American-style football and New York parade with giant balloons More

Video For Obama, Ferguson Violence is a Personal Issue

With two years left in term, analysts say, president has less to lose by taking conversation on race further More

Video Italian Espresso Expands Into Space

When Italian astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti headed for the ISS, her countrymen worried how she would survive six months drinking only instant coffee More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Wangchuk from: NYC
May 18, 2012 10:09 AM
When it comes to territory, the PRC is extremely hegemonistic. They invaded Tibet & East Turkestan in 1949-50. They invaded India in 1962 & still occupy Indian territory. They attacked Vietnam in 1979. Now the PRC claims all of the S. China Sea even those these waters are showed by many nations including Philippines & Vietnam. It's time Asian nations stoop up to the Middle Kingdom & say "Enough!"

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
South Africa Sees Male Circumcision as Way to Reduce HIV Infectionsi
X
November 28, 2014 3:31 PM
South Africa remains plagued by AIDS despite massive government and NGO efforts on prevention and life-sustaining Anti-Retro-Viral programs. But the country has opened up another front to reduce new HIV infections: promoting circumcision. Emilie Iob reports for VOA News from a pioneering circumcision center in Orange Farm, Johannesburg.
Video

Video South Africa Sees Male Circumcision as Way to Reduce HIV Infections

South Africa remains plagued by AIDS despite massive government and NGO efforts on prevention and life-sustaining Anti-Retro-Viral programs. But the country has opened up another front to reduce new HIV infections: promoting circumcision. Emilie Iob reports for VOA News from a pioneering circumcision center in Orange Farm, Johannesburg.
Video

Video To Make A Living, Nairobi Street Vendors Face Legal Hurdles, Physical Violence

The Nairobi City Council has been accused of brutality in dealing with hawkers in the Central Business District - in order to stop them from illegally selling their wares on the streets. Lenny Ruvaga has more for VOA News from the Kenyan capital.
Video

Video For Obama, Ferguson Violence is a Personal Issue

Throughout the crisis in Ferguson, Missouri, President Barack Obama has urged calm, restraint and respect for the rule of law. But the events in Ferguson have prompted him to call — more openly than he has before — for profound changes to end the racism and distrust that he believes still exists between whites and blacks in the United States. VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.
Video

Video Online Magazine Gets Kids Discussing Big Questions

Teen culture in America is often criticized for being superficial. But an online magazine has been encouraging some teenagers to explore deeper issues, and rewarding their efforts. VOA religion reporter Jerome Socolovsky went to this year’s Kidspirit awards ceremony in New York.
Video

Video US Community Kicks Off Thanksgiving With Parade

Thursday is Thanksgiving in the United States, a holiday whose roots go back to the country's earliest days as a British colony. One way Americans celebrate the occasion is with parades. Anush Avetisyan takes us to one such event on the day before Thanksgiving near Washington, where a community's diversity is on display. Joy Wagner narrates
Video

Video Aung San Suu Kyi: Myanmar Opposition to Keep Pushing for Constitutional Change

Myanmar opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi says she and her supporters will continue pushing to amend a constitutional clause that bars her from running for president next year. VOA's Than Lwin Htun reports from the capital Naypyitaw in this report narrated by Colin Lovett.
Video

Video Mali Attempts to Shut Down Ebola Transmission Chain

Senegal and Nigeria were able to stop small Ebola outbreaks by closely monitoring those who had contact with the sick person and quickly isolating anyone with symptoms. Mali is now scrambling to do the same. VOA’s Anne Look reports from Mali on what the country is doing to shut down the chain of transmission.
Video

Video Ukraine Marks Anniversary of Deadly 1930s Famine

During a commemoration for millions who died of starvation in Ukraine in the early 1930s, President Petro Poroshenko lashed out at Soviet-era totalitarianism for causing the deaths and accused today’s Russian-backed rebels in the east of using similar tactics. VOA’s Daniel Shearf reports from Kyiv.
Video

Video Hong Kong Protests at a Crossroads

New public opinion polls in Hong Kong indicate declining support for pro-democracy demonstrations after weeks of street protests. VOA’s Bill Ide in Guangzhou and Pros Laput in Hong Kong spoke with protesters and observers about whether demonstrators have been too aggressive in pushing for change.
Video

Video US Immigration Relief Imminent for Mixed-Status Families

Tens of thousands of undocumented immigrants in the Washington, D.C., area may benefit from a controversial presidential order announced this week. It's not a path to citizenship, as some activists hoped. But it will allow more immigrants who arrived as children or who have citizen children, to avoid deportation and work legally. VOA's Victoria Macchi talks with one young man who benefited from an earlier presidential order, and whose parents may now benefit after years of living in fear.
Video

Video New Skateboard Defies Gravity

A futuristic dream only a couple of decades ago, the hoverboard – a skateboard that floats above the ground - has finally been made possible. While still not ready for mass production, it promises to become a cool mode of transport... at least over some surfaces. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Falling Gas Prices Impact US Oil Extraction

With the price of oil now less than $80 a barrel, motorists throughout the United States are benefiting from gas prices below $3 a gallon. But as VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, the decreasing price of petroleum has a downside for the hydraulic fracturing industry in the United States.

All About America

AppleAndroid